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Friday, July 25, 2008

Day Two - Rio De Janeiro Trip - Rio Open Day

After The Win


Weight: 94.6 KG (208.557lbs)

Woke up early, expecting to get the luggage in around 10am as promised...Uh...NO...Called to check on it and they tell me it MAY be 2pm or so, depending on customs before they can have the bags here...So, that means I am in another country Sans Gi once more...For some reason, I am feeling really weak, and because I didn't wake up until about 11, I missed breakfast...Well I got in some time on the pc...stretched, then watched from the window, while Jon went back out to his second surfing lesson...He rode three waves in, and also took a few big spills but it looked fun....The beach and ocean was BEAUTIFUL as the clouds of yesterday were burned off...And people were out in force!
Jon comes back in and we decide to just go on over to the tournament venue and get a Gi there...We get downstairs and ask for an english speaking cab driver, which the hotel provides...His name is Carlos...turns out Carlos trained under Carlson Gracie many years ago...His english is pretty good and he tells us no problem, that he will have us there in time and even wait on us...Well Carlos was nice enough but he was full of shit! He didn't remember the exact place (Tijuca Tenis Clube) so we drove around fo 30 minutes once we got to Tijuca asking different cabbies and passers by for the directions to the tournament...Meanwhile I coughed hard a few times and tweaked my rib again! I put on a couple of these Lidocaine patches on my sternum and my side area where my cartilage is pulled/torn...Not feeling much relief and starting to think this is a bad idea...Anyways, we get there and there are some really nice vendors out there and a couple of Gi companies I'd never seen so I went with a Thor brand lightweight competition Gi (Pissed that they didn't have a black on in my size) but it fit well and I had no choice but t get it to compete anyway...Got it for like $85 bucks with the belt...
Went inside and shook hands with Royler Gracie and Megaton who both said they remembered me...Forgot to take pictures with em though:( Damn...Anyways..we go over and find the Alliance team guys...Jon gets a chance to get a Gi as well ad checks his weight...He is about 5 pounds over but he ate today...Speaking of which, I still haven't....Well I get re-acquainted with the guys then put on my Gi...I am weighing 94.6KG which is my normal weight but everyone else int he division all weigh in at 100KG or right at the weight limit ...Anyways I try to get my lidocaine patches and ribs wrapped but the medic says it is a bad idea...So they tape the patches down and off I go...
First match is called and for some reason the guy gets DQed after me sitting there for some time...I still am not sure why, the ring coordinator was trying to explain but I couldn't catch it...Meu Portuguese Muito Pequeno...Well next fight is up with a guy who I am warned has a bunch of wins and is strong as an ox...He didn't particularly look that way, but when we locked up, I knew...He attempted to get me in a wristlock off the clinch, but I recognized it and took the hand out and worked to try to pull him for the fake guard pull to single leg....He circles the other way and tries to pull half guard...I do not accept it and worked on passing and had really good positioning...But I saw a triangle opportunity and attempted to rotate all the way around for it...I didn't get it locked so they gave him 2pts for a takedown...ehh...We work for a while and I think about taking myself out to the side for an armbar but decide it might hurt my ribs so I just work controls and get back to my house...Full Guard...We work for a while with him attempting wristlocks and his hands are like vice grips...even with my hand above my head he was cranking with a good pressure...I get it free and work his Gi around his back to set up the choke...I did not keep my elbow in well enough, and eventually when trying to switch grips, I lose the lapel as he posts directly in my chest...The sternum shot I feared!...Hurts like hell but I keep my composure....But in losing the lapel, I have my shot...I shoot the triangle, and honestly inside I'm turning flips...My eyes got wide and I dive for the leg...I tighten it and we fight for a few...I act like I am pulling for the armbar but just to make him give up the arm to cross...Since I have his leg I just tighten and squeeze to hold and hope he doesn't struggle much and hurt my ribs more...Well he taps eventually...I get my first true win in the ADULT division at Brown Belt...
Rio Open Adult Brown Super Heavyweight Semi-Finals Match

Next match is against an Alliance Teammate...Name is Felipe and he looks like a mini He-Man...That said, we work on fighting grips form the start...And eventually after faking that same guard pull take down I get to guard...He tries to work the lapel wrap around to control my sleeves and works twice for some stand up guard breaks but I do not break...I do however tweak my ribs once more...Well...The last time I get him back into guard...I shoot the triangle but sloppily...He manages to get a hand in barely...I work to pull it out but again decide not to fight it more and risk the rib nor risk a pass attempt as the score is still zero zero...Well I decide to open up a tad bit and he sits back and attempts to roll for a toe hold..I defend it perfectly, and we roll a couple times with me defending and coming up on top to attempt the pass while he has my leg...But I am too fast in moving and he switches back to toe hold and we roll onto another mat...I am blocking the toe hold attempts easily and move the wrong way right into a knee bar...I am watching the referee as I think he is about to stop us as we are rolling into the other guys on the next mat and ease up as he is moving in towards us...But he is just allowing us to continue as Felipe has the kneebar about set up...When the ref stands in I think he is calling time, and I relax, and there goes the knee...I yell and tap b/c I am pissed he cranked it but I realized he didn't see the ref plus it is MY fault I eased up:(...Ah well...He is a really good Brown Belt under Fabio Gurgel and after the match Fabio tells him as he is complaining about attempting to break my guard, that "Steve has a Monster Guard! He is really tough!"...That made my day...So I it with a Silver in the Adult Division of the Rio Open (No age classes) and Brown...I got interviewed by a nice young Brazilian woman named Gisaa and went to get my medal...My breathing is labored and hurts and my sternum is hurting bad again so I decide not to do the Open in the Adult division so I can do well tomorrow at the International Masters & Seniors in my weight class and the Absolute!

Rio Open Adult Brown Super Heavyweight Finals Match

Back to the room we go...we get here and first our keys don't work....Make it downstairs get new ones, and our luggage is here...BUT we have a large leak in the ceiling near the A/C unit...It rained badly for a short time today...We call down and Jon goes off to the sauna to cut some weight...They come and remove like 2 buckets of water from up in the ceiling...I still haven't eaten and hope I have not forgotten much, but I am honestly feeling good about myself and my skills a bit...The level of the art here is HIGH...Tomorrow is another opportunity ...hurting or not, I will do my best....I have my own Gi, underwear, medicine, etc etc...It's time to get back to work! Thanks to everyone for taking the time to read...I will post both videos when I can dump them...I fight on....

Though For Today: Forget about winning and losing; forget about pride and pain. Let your opponent graze your skin and you smash into his flesh; let him smash into your flesh and you fracture his bones; let him fracture your bones and you take his life. Do not be concerned with escaping safely - lay your life before him.

1 comment:

Joon Oh said...

Brilliant. Great write up on the event. Not many people walk away from tournament with a medal, especially one in Brasil. Congrats, and good luck tomorrow!